A parish-based grassroots service of compassion in support of women’s material needs.
In 2011 the women at St Charles Borromeo Catholic Community decided to help women in our local community by establishing “Mothers Cupboard”. In our attempt to understand the needs of women a focus group was facilitated by Dr. Lindell Joseph. We learned three things about the women in this Orlando community:
- Women require emotional support such as the need to foster relationships with other women.
- Women require professional support such as haircuts for job interviews and dental care.
- Women require material needs such as sanitary/feminine napkins and soap.
This led to the development of our mission which is “women caring for women” and an idea of creating Lady’s Bags. A “Lady’s Bag” is a bag decorated with butterflies containing a package of sanitary napkins, and a bar of soap. The term of a lady’s bag was a discreet way to package sanitary napkins.
How are “Lady’s Bags” created and managed?
Women in our local community create the bags. When created, the bags are taken to a distribution center called Brother’s Keeper food pantry for St. Charles Borromeo Church on Edgewater Drive in Orlando. The resources for the bags have been obtained in multiple ways:
- Donations from our congregation
- On April 15th, Mothers Cupboard was the recipient for Frontier Civitan 12th Annual Charity Tea proceeds in Orlando Florida.
How can you help?
- Contact us to begin your own distribution center at your church or food pantry and we will provide you with a toolkit.
- Provide donations or supplies to stock Brother’s Keepers food pantry
What else have we done?
We created a Women Support Directory. It provides a list of resources within our local community. These resources include healthcare, housing, money, education, and obtaining identification etc. Please feel free to download a copy and give it to a family member or friend.
What have we learned through the process?
- Women have told us, “this is great since it is not covered by food stamps” and “this is a necessity when you live in the woods with a teenage daughter”.
- We have learned humbleness and compassion toward other women.
If you would like to participate in this service, contact us at 407-733-1448 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Women of St. Charles Borromeo Community